WILLIAM GROPPER – RELIEF – A Treasury of American Prints
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BY WILLIAM GROPPER
MR. GROPPER, whose work appears regularly in New Masses,
does not seem to love the human race any more than that lamented bard who admitted
I do not love the human race.
I do not love its ugly face.
While Relief is not as readily understandable as certain others of his cartoons,
it is extraordinarily powerful.
The wing-collared Neanderthal man at the
table impersonates graft, and you may attach any speciﬁc label to him you
His resemblance to the hog is too vivid to be fortuitous. It should be
noted that the table is the “groaning board,” the plate of beans, hard roll, and
wine bottle and glass being the artist’s shorthand for the concept plenty.
When the “embattled farmer” gets through with Homo Neanderthalensis, there is
little doubt that some of the relief money will be diverted into its proper